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25 Insider Facts about Amsterdam

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About Amsterdam, 25 Insider Facts!

Recently, while browsing my feed on Stalkbook, a post popped up called 25 INSANE facts about Amsterdam. The information contained therein, was neither INSANE nor particularly accurate. I assume that it was written by excited tourists, after a joint or three in an Amsterdam coffeeshop, which as the post excitedly pointed out, DON’T ACTUALLY SERVE COFFEE! Insane!

Which brings me to the subject of today’s post. The Shallow Man, remaining true to the stated purpose of my blog, which is to inform, educate and entertain, has decided to put together 25 actual facts known only to insiders in Amsterdam.

Now this post might upset some, and if as a result, I’m captured by a group of angry Amsterdammers, and am forced to enter the Utopia house, and socialize with the losers, hypochondriacs, and long term unemployed that make up the participants of this dire reality show. I’ll face my enemies and say “If you wanted to stick me in a house with unemployed people, you should have just sent me to live with Willem and Maxima.”

The things I do for my readers!

1. There is no racism in Amsterdam

If you disagree, ROT OP NAAR JE EIGEN LAND!/Go back to where you came from (copyright AT5 Facebook discussion forum)

2. The Red Light District

Only stupid tourists pay full price for the dubious pleasures of the various Red Light Districts in Amsterdam. What insiders know about Amsterdam is that the city council actually sells the OV-neukkaart. If you purchase this card, then the tenth visit to a red light lady is gratis!

a little known thing about Amsterdam
Impress the ladies

3. The monthly test siren

If you happen to be in Amsterdam on the first Monday of a month, and hear a loud siren, don’t worry. This is actually a test of the warning siren in case of floods. If you forget about this, just look at how Dutch men are wearing their trousers. If they are high above the ankles, then you know that floods are imminent.  (Which means there’s a permanent risk of flooding).

4. Smoking in some bars is mandatory

If you’re going to a popular bar in the Amsterdam Rokin area, make sure that you carry a packet of cigarettes with you. The doormen usually insist on proof that you’re a smoker before allowing entry.

5. Amsterdam’s actual number one stolen item

A common mistruth told about Amsterdam is that bikes are the number one stolen item. In fact, the latest reports show that girls aged between 16-18 often complain about their virginity being stolen after visiting Het Paardje, the Kleine Cooldown and Cafe Bubbels. The Facebook pages of these bars often have posts from confused customers saying “has anyone seen my virginity? I had it when I arrived, but now it’s gone.”

Anouk, lost her virginity while waiting to check in her coat at the Cooldown Cafe

 

6. English is Amsterdam’s second language

Which explains why the Dutch love confusing tourists by translating every damn thing.  For example.

Tourist “Excuse me, can you tell me how to get to Leidseplein?”

Dutch person “Yes, to get to Leidsesquare you need to take the tram number 5 and…

Confused Tourist “Thanks, but how do I get to Leidseplein?”

Dutch person “I told you, to get to Leidsesquare..”

Tourist proceeds to throw himself in the nearest canal.

They won't tell me how to get to Leidseplein!
They won’t tell me how to get to Leidseplein!

7. Mail order brides

If you order a mail order bride, make sure that you’re at home at the time of delivery. PostNL are notorious for leaving packages with complete strangers. I lost a mail order bride to a neighbor this way, and didn’t even get a refund. Make sure that you’re home when they arrive.

Jeroen was happy when my package was delivered to the wrong address
Jeroen was happy when my package was delivered to the wrong address

8. Environmentally Friendly

Amsterdammers are so environmentally friendly, that hairdryers are banned within it’s borders. Don’t be shocked or appalled when as is highly likely, you see lots of women, cycling or on public transport in the morning with hair wetter than a gold digger on a date with a footballer.

Dutch female hairstyle
The Amsterdam natural look

9. The Noise!

99% of Dutch women aged between 18-29 are hard of hearing, hence the reason they shout at each other at the top of their voices, ALL THE TIME!

10. Religion

Denim worship is one of the most widely practised religions in the Netherlands. With the church of G-Star Raw being the most visited.

11. Amsterdam has undercover immigration officers

The plain clothes agents of the immigration services will usually pull over cyclists and ask them for papers, if they stop at red lights, zebra crossings, or use bike lanes instead of pavements. This is not Dutch, and will spark the interest of the immigration patrols.

12. There are more women than men in Amsterdam

Which leads to most mobile phone networks crashing every Friday night between 11pm and 3am as women go on the hunt for nearby men using Tinder. To succeed with the local Dutch women, behave like the Dutch men, stare at the women until they attack you like a pitbull on a jogger.

14. The museum of flat shoes.

Dedicated to Dutch women’s shoes throughout the ages.

Dutch women don't do heels
The Amsterdam museum of flat shoes

15. The Dutch fashion museum

Displaying all of the highlights of Dutch fashion, this Museum is based in an opticians. If you like what you see, they’ll offer you a free eye examination.

16. The Dutch museum of politeness

Dedicated to listing all of the famously polite Dutch people throughout the ages, it’s still empty, but if you enjoy seeing a large minimalist space, with no exhibits, it’s worth a visit.

17. The museum of tolerantie

One of the things I love about Amsterdam is the famous museum of tolerantie. Here you can learn little known facts such as

  • Black people were involved in slavery too (so there you go)
  • If you feel discriminated against it’s probably your fault, and perhaps you should go back to your own country
  • ‘Kut-Marokkaan’ is actually a compliment
  • If you want to live here, learn our culture and language (but please don’t move in next door to us)
they are not black
Police are looking for two black girls seen handing out sweets in the Maastraat

18. Amsterdam has more dogs than people

Just as cattle are considered sacred in some religions, in Amsterdam, dogs are worshipped even more than denim, bikes and smoking. If you’re bitten by a dog while in Amsterdam, make sure that you apologise to the owner for upsetting the careful diet and eating routine of the animal. Don’t scream too loudly, as the dog is probably a sensitive soul that will be upset by this.

White Pitbull
When biting joggers, I always wear a condom, you can’t be too careful

 

19. Respect the local culture and traditions

By having sex on the second date. Nothing upsets a Dutch Amsterdammer more than not having sex on the second date. Dutch people move from Brabant, Arnhem, Maastricht, and all over the country just because it’s easier to have sex in Amsterdam. They’re entitled to it Goddammit! If you agree to a second date, it’s because rumpy pumpy is on the menu, don’t disappoint!

20. Eat fruit bought at the Albert Cuyp Market on the way home

Fruit at the Albert Cuyp market ages faster than 40 a day smoker with a drink problem.   It looked healthy on the stall, but when you get home, the fruit is covered in mould. An insider tip about Amsterdam, eat the fruit while at the stall. Don’t bother taking it home.

21. Amsterdam is the fifth safest city in the world

According to a recent report, Amsterdam is the fifth safest city in the world. Which would explain why there has been at least one fatal shooting a week in Amsterdam in the past month. But it’s ok, most of the shootings have taken place in poor neighborhoods. Amsterdam city council is taking this seriously. They plan to introduce bullet proof vest vending machines all over the city.

22. The City is a pimp

Annoyed that the profits from brothels and prostitution in general are lining the pockets of organised crime. Amsterdam city council has decided to enter the flesh business. Yes, the city will partner with prostitutes to run brothels. The Mayor of Amsterdam is ordering a fur coat, some gold jewelry, and a cadillac with leopard skin seats to take him to and from the brothels under his control.  This brings a whole new meaning to the triple x logo of Amsterdam.

things about Amsterdam, the city wants to own brothels
The Mayor takes his job seriously

23. Amsterdam etiquette

If an Amsterdammer goes out for a drink with you, never interrupt them while they are busy texting. It’s just not done. In fact, if you’d like to have a conversation with them, send them a text. They’ll respond pretty quickly.

24. Amsterdam property taxes include an extra amount for

Mice. There are so many mice in Amsterdam, that the council includes them when calculating local taxes. So for example, for every resident, there are at least six mice per apartment. This covers public costs for pest control, cheese shortages and against the exhaustion of the peanut butter supply chain.

25. Airbnb is taking over the city

Airbnb is so popular, that even private garages, public toilets, and park benches can be hired using this fantastic website. People who like to experience real local life in Amsterdam can even hire the back room of a Kebab store or FEBO. The smell of saturated fat, really reflects the local Dutch Amsterdam experience.

Only 200 euros a night for a shared room on Airbnb in Amsterdam. My roommate snored a lot.
Only 200 euros a night for a shared room on Airbnb in Amsterdam. My roommate snored a lot.

I hope that my insider tips, teach you the things you really need to know about Amsterdam.

No pimps were hurt during the writing of this article.

 

Till next time, you better have my money ready when I roll up in the Mayors pimp wagon.

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About Simon Woolcot

Infamous blogger, annoyance and self-confessed Shallow Man. Simon is a British expat who has lived in Amsterdam since 2004. As well as writing this blog, Simon also has a YouTube channel of the same name, writes and directs videos and hosts seminars about life in the Netherlands. He also works as a content marketing and SEO specialist.